At its meeting on March 22, the Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District’s Board of Directors declared a No-Drought condition for the aquifers within the District, effective immediately. The second of the area’s two groundwater drought indicators – the water level in the Lovelady monitor well – has been rising steadily because of the extraordinarily wet winter and spring. The other indicator, sustained flow rate at Barton Springs, moved above its threshold in late January, but both indicators need to be above designated thresholds to emerge from drought. The District declared a groundwater drought on April 28, 2011, with mandatory water-use restrictions being enforced since then. In No-Drought status, groundwater users are encouraged to maintain conservation practices, but water use restrictions are lifted.
The annual meeting of the Ruby Ranch Water Supply Corporation (RRWSC) will be held on April 24, 2012 at 7 p.m. at the Ruby Ranch Lodge. In the RRWSC Bylaws, Ruby Ranch lot owners in sections 3 through 8, even if they do not yet have a water tap, are members of RRWSC and eligible to vote at this meeting. The RRWSC is separate from the Ruby Ranch Homeowners Association and is run by a separate Board of Directors.
Please attend this meeting to be introduced to the current board members and to discuss the status of our water system. The Board will be available to answer any questions about the new Trinity Aquifer well as well as the management and future of the water system.
If you are unable to attend you may mail the official ballot to RRWSC PO Box 1585, Buda, Tx. 78610. Current state law does not allow proxy voting. The enclosed Agenda and Official Ballot will be used to conduct any business at this meeting. Two amendments to the Bylaws are necessary to comply with new state law. There are 4 at-large director positions available on the board and 5 candidates are running. The 4 candidates with the highest vote total will be elected.
Our water system was established in 1997 and has been furnishing water to property owners for close to 15 years. During this time the system has been a first class and safe water source that has grown and expanded to meet increased demand.
The Board of Directors of the Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District eased drought restrictions from Stage III Critical Drought to Stage II Alarm at its Board meeting this evening, effective immediately. With above average rainfall this winter, soils reached saturation and runoff created enough creek flow to contribute some recharge to the aquifer. Both of the District’s drought triggers have now crossed back over their respective Stage II Alarm Drought thresholds. The Lovelady Monitor Well depth-to-water is above 190.7 feet and continues to rise; the Barton Springs 10-day average discharge is well above its 20 cubic feet per second threshold.
While water levels in the aquifer are on the rise, without continued above average rainfall, the District could find itself back in Stage III Critical Drought this summer. “In 2010, Hurricane Alex and Tropical Storm Hermine brought record rainfall to Central Texas. This time we’ve seen smaller, more frequent rain events that are finally causing slow rises in our monitoring wells,” commented Brian Smith, Principal Hydrogeologist with the District.
Under Stage II restrictions, permittees are now required to restrict monthly pumping by at least 20% for historical permits and from 20 to 50% for conditional permits, depending on permit class. Water utilities supplied by groundwater in the District will restrict outdoor water use to comply with watering schedules that each of them established, and that the District approved. Though Stage II Alarm Drought restrictions generally allow for some outdoor water use, groundwater users should continue to conserve and maintain a monthly water use of less than 4,000 gallons per person (less than 16,000 gallons for a family of 4).